Visa and residence permit in Denmark

When travelling to Denmark you need to have the right permits in place. Depending on how long you are planning on staying and where you come from, you may need a visa or a residence permit. Keep reading to find out how to get a visa and residence permit in Denmark.

When do you need a visa or residence permit?

If you are coming to Denmark for a short stay of 90 days or less you need to apply for a visa. If you are planning on staying longer, you need to apply for a residence permit. The process varies depending on where you come from:

EU/EEA citizens

EU/EEA citizens do not need to apply for residence permit, but must instead apply for an EU residence document at SIRI (Agency for International Recruitment and Integration/Styrelsen for International Rekruttering og Integration). SIRI is located at the citizen services centre at Dokk1 in Aarhus. At the start of each new semester, SIRI reserves some days to process applications for new international students. You will be notified of the exact dates and procedures at study start.  Ask your International Coordinator or Student Counsellor for more information. Go here to learn more about EU residence as a student in Denmark.

Nordic citizens

As a citizen of the Nordics you are allowed to live in Denmark without a residence permit. Go directly to Citizen Services/Borger Service in your local municipality to obtain a CPR number and health insurance card, if you are staying in Denmark for more than 3 months.

Non-EU/EEA citizens

You have to apply for residence permit and the process can take up to 60 days. As soon as you have paid the tuition fee, VIA will initiate the online application process. Note that there is a processing fee. Learn more about the process at

Benefits and privileges of a student visa/residence and work permit

Once you have been granted a residence and work permit or EU residence document you are allowed to reside in Denmark as a student. EU citizens are allowed to work on the same terms as Danes, non-EU citizens are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week to support yourself while studying. Learn more about how to get a student job in Denmark. If you are an EU citizen you may also be able to apply for SU, the public student grant, if you fulfil the requirements – more about SU here.

Permanent residence and work permit after graduation

Once you have graduated, you can be granted a 3-year extension of your residence permit if you want to find a job in Denmark. The residence permit for job seeking grants you the same right to work as you had as a student, i.e. 20 hours per week and full time in the summer months June, July and August. Go here for everything you need to know about work and residence permit after graduation.

Frequently asked questions about Visa and residence permit

  • In Denmark, permanent residence refers to the legal status granted to non-Danish citizens who have been living in the country for a certain period of time and who meet the eligibility criteria established by the Danish Immigration Service.

    A permanent residence permit allows an individual to live and work in Denmark without any time limits or the need for additional visas or permits. It also provides access to the Danish welfare system and social benefits, as well as the opportunity to apply for Danish citizenship after a certain period of time.

    To be eligible for permanent residence in Denmark, an individual must generally have lived in the country for a minimum of five years, have a clean criminal record, and have passed a Danish language and culture test. In some cases, individuals may be eligible for permanent residence in Denmark through other means, such as being the spouse or partner of a Danish citizen or having lived in Denmark as a child.

    More about permanent residency in Denmark here.

  • If you want to get permanent residency in Denmark, you generally need to have had a temporary residence permit in Denmark for 8 years (4 in some cases) and meet other eligibility criteria set by the Danish Immigration Service. This includes passing a Danish language and culture test and having a clean criminal record among other things

    Remember that each case is unique, and there may be other factors that affect your eligibility for permanent residency in Denmark. It is always best to consult with the Danish Immigration Service or a qualified immigration lawyer to discuss your individual circumstances.

    Learn more about applying for a permanent residence permit in Denmark here